1“Listen, O heavens, and I will speak!
Hear, O earth, the words that I say!
2Let my teaching fall on you like rain;
let my speech settle like dew.
Let my words fall like rain on tender grass,
like gentle showers on young plants.
3I will proclaim the name of the lord;
how glorious is our God!
4He is the Rock; his deeds are perfect.
Everything he does is just and fair.
He is a faithful God who does no wrong;
how just and upright he is!
5“But they have acted corruptly toward him;
when they act so perversely,
are they really his children?# The meaning of the Hebrew is uncertain.
They are a deceitful and twisted generation.
6Is this the way you repay the lord,
you foolish and senseless people?
Isn’t he your Father who created you?
Has he not made you and established you?
7Remember the days of long ago;
think about the generations past.
Ask your father, and he will inform you.
Inquire of your elders, and they will tell you.
8When the Most High assigned lands to the nations,
when he divided up the human race,
he established the boundaries of the peoples
according to the number in his heavenly court.# As in Dead Sea Scrolls, which read the number of the sons of God, and Greek version, which reads the number of the angels of God; Masoretic Text reads the number of the sons of Israel.
9“For the people of Israel belong to the lord;
Jacob is his special possession.
10He found them in a desert land,
in an empty, howling wasteland.
He surrounded them and watched over them;
he guarded them as he would guard his own eyes.# Hebrew as the pupil of his eye.
11Like an eagle that rouses her chicks
and hovers over her young,
so he spread his wings to take them up
and carried them safely on his pinions.
12The lord alone guided them;
they followed no foreign gods.
13He let them ride over the highlands
and feast on the crops of the fields.
He nourished them with honey from the rock
and olive oil from the stony ground.
14He fed them yogurt from the herd
and milk from the flock,
together with the fat of lambs.
He gave them choice rams from Bashan, and goats,
together with the choicest wheat.
You drank the finest wine,
made from the juice of grapes.
15“But Israel# Hebrew Jeshurun, a term of endearment for Israel. soon became fat and unruly;
the people grew heavy, plump, and stuffed!
Then they abandoned the God who had made them;
they made light of the Rock of their salvation.
16They stirred up his jealousy by worshiping foreign gods;
they provoked his fury with detestable deeds.
17They offered sacrifices to demons, which are not God,
to gods they had not known before,
to new gods only recently arrived,
to gods their ancestors had never feared.
18You neglected the Rock who had fathered you;
you forgot the God who had given you birth.
19“The lord saw this and drew back,
provoked to anger by his own sons and daughters.
20He said, ‘I will abandon them;
then see what becomes of them.
For they are a twisted generation,
children without integrity.
21They have roused my jealousy by worshiping things that are not God;
they have provoked my anger with their useless idols.
Now I will rouse their jealousy through people who are not even a people;
I will provoke their anger through the foolish Gentiles.
22For my anger blazes forth like fire
and burns to the depths of the grave.# Hebrew of Sheol.
It devours the earth and all its crops
and ignites the foundations of the mountains.
23I will heap disasters upon them
and shoot them down with my arrows.
24I will weaken them with famine,
burning fever, and deadly disease.
I will send the fangs of wild beasts
and poisonous snakes that glide in the dust.
25Outside, the sword will bring death,
and inside, terror will strike
both young men and young women,
both infants and the aged.
26I would have annihilated them,
wiping out even the memory of them.
27But I feared the taunt of Israel’s enemy,
who might misunderstand and say,
“Our own power has triumphed!
The lord had nothing to do with this!”’
28“But Israel is a senseless nation;
the people are foolish, without understanding.
29Oh, that they were wise and could understand this!
Oh, that they might know their fate!
30How could one person chase a thousand of them,
and two people put ten thousand to flight,
unless their Rock had sold them,
unless the lord had given them up?
31But the rock of our enemies is not like our Rock,
as even they recognize.# The meaning of the Hebrew is uncertain. Greek version reads our enemies are fools.
32Their vine grows from the vine of Sodom,
from the vineyards of Gomorrah.
Their grapes are poison,
and their clusters are bitter.
33Their wine is the venom of serpents,
the deadly poison of cobras.
34“The lord says, ‘Am I not storing up these things,
sealing them away in my treasury?
35I will take revenge; I will pay them back.
In due time their feet will slip.
Their day of disaster will arrive,
and their destiny will overtake them.’
36“Indeed, the lord will give justice to his people,
and he will change his mind about# Or will take revenge for. his servants,
when he sees their strength is gone
and no one is left, slave or free.
37Then he will ask, ‘Where are their gods,
the rocks they fled to for refuge?
38Where now are those gods,
who ate the fat of their sacrifices
and drank the wine of their offerings?
Let those gods arise and help you!
Let them provide you with shelter!
39Look now; I myself am he!
There is no other god but me!
I am the one who kills and gives life;
I am the one who wounds and heals;
no one can be rescued from my powerful hand!
40Now I raise my hand to heaven
and declare, “As surely as I live,
41when I sharpen my flashing sword
and begin to carry out justice,
I will take revenge on my enemies
and repay those who reject me.
42I will make my arrows drunk with blood,
and my sword will devour flesh—
the blood of the slaughtered and the captives,
and the heads of the enemy leaders.”’
43“Rejoice with him, you heavens,
and let all of God’s angels worship him.# As in Dead Sea Scrolls and Greek version; Masoretic Text lacks the first two lines. Compare Heb 1:6.
Rejoice with his people, you Gentiles,
and let all the angels be strengthened in him.# As in Greek version; Hebrew text lacks this sentence. Compare Rom 15:10.
For he will avenge the blood of his children# As in Dead Sea Scrolls and Greek version; Masoretic Text reads his servants.;
he will take revenge against his enemies.
He will repay those who hate him# As in Dead Sea Scrolls and Greek version; Masoretic Text lacks this line.
and cleanse his people’s land.”
44So Moses came with Joshua# Hebrew Hoshea, a variant name for Joshua. son of Nun and recited all the words of this song to the people.
45When Moses had finished reciting all these words to the people of Israel, 46he added: “Take to heart all the words of warning I have given you today. Pass them on as a command to your children so they will obey every word of these instructions. 47These instructions are not empty words—they are your life! By obeying them you will enjoy a long life in the land you will occupy when you cross the Jordan River.”
Moses’ Death Foretold
48That same day the lord said to Moses, 49“Go to Moab, to the mountains east of the river,# Hebrew the mountains of Abarim. and climb Mount Nebo, which is across from Jericho. Look out across the land of Canaan, the land I am giving to the people of Israel as their own special possession. 50Then you will die there on the mountain. You will join your ancestors, just as Aaron, your brother, died on Mount Hor and joined his ancestors. 51For both of you betrayed me with the Israelites at the waters of Meribah at Kadesh# Hebrew waters of Meribath-kadesh. in the wilderness of Zin. You failed to demonstrate my holiness to the people of Israel there. 52So you will see the land from a distance, but you may not enter the land I am giving to the people of Israel.”